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Grass is greener on the other side or is it???


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What is it about the grass is greener concept and men (especially at age 25)? I have heard of so many stories where men that age leave their girlfriends just to see if grass is greener on the other side. This happened to me - my bf left me because he said he wasn't ready for a serious relationship (not that I was thinking of marriage or moving in together) even though he says he knows he will never find anyone as good as me. I just don't get it. Is it just the case of them not appreciating you enough? I know that when I find something valueable, I do my best to keep it.

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It's not just men, it's also women. My Fiancee of 5 years decided at the age of 27 (almost 28) that she was too young to settle down. The big kicker was that SHE asked ME to marry her 4 years prior!

 

I think the problem comes when you've been with someone a while, gotten comfy, the intial "honeymoon" effect has long gone and then you get a bit of attention from someone else that makes you feel special. So you start to think that you should always feel this way about someone - butterflies and all that stuff.

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This is definitely an "equal opportunity" issue for both genders. A lot of people in their twenties typically feel they are too young to settle down, or that "someone better" is out there. I think it's more to do with the fact that this is an age where people are discovering their identities, trying to figure out what they want...

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Well, both men and women do it.

 

I think often it happens when someone is just not entirely sure their partner is right for them (or sure they aren't), or has missed out on their "individual/personal growth" and have to go through that, or yes, maybe when the grass is greener.

 

I am sure many of us could attest to having heard (or even said) the same lines in our lives. I think while there may be "some truth" to the lines, they are often used to also ease guilt too.

 

Sometimes the grass IS greener, of course all lawns require maintenance, but sometimes there are some very valid reasons for leaving and both move on to find more suitable partners. And sometimes it isn't, but they could not appreciate it as they had so much personal growing to do before they could, and they find that out for themselves. All depends on the reasons for living.

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Yes, it is both men and women.

 

In my case, he doesn't really have a particular reason for leaving except that he wants to see what else is out there. He thinks that the relationship is all about butterflies and doesn't realise that it really only begins once those butterflies subside. What gets me is that he KNOWS that he won't find anyone as good as me and is aware that our relationship had no faults. Why???? Will he ever come to his senses?

 

All I can do I guess is stay away in the hope that he realises soon what he is missing out on (I am his frist serious relationship by the way).

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I don't believe that anyone will leave their partner out of curiosity. Saying that he/she left because the "grass is greener" theory is very difficult to prove. When your own emotions are at stake and you're emotionally invested in someone, you won't leave them because you're curious to see if the so called "grass is greener on the other side."

 

There had to have been other reasons why he/she left you. Him saying "I'll never find anyone as good as you" is meant to minimize your pain. It's similar to the cliche line, "it's not you, it's me" or "I don't deserve you." These are all said with the intentions of minimizing your pain. Remember, when someone breaks up with you they need to have a clear conscience. In order to have that, they want to make you feel less bad about it although goodbye hurts all the same.

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Tamara, you hit the nail right on the head. Since you are his first serious relationship, he really has no yardstick against which to measure anything, and thereforeeee he will have a lot of doubts and questions about what it's like with other people. My ex and I were both each other's first relationship, and we both 'settled down' at very early ages...me at 19 and him at 24. I've always been much more like you said in your first post, that if you find something valuable, you want to hold onto it for as long as you can. And I think he was that way too for a long time. But people start to change, and like the other folks say, sometimes they get a feel for the butterflies, and they miss that and want to recapture that, and they forget that the real relationship starts after the butterflies go away.

 

Your ex may come to his senses, or he may not. All you can do is to take the time and space you have away from him to learn something about yourself, do things that will make you happy, and try to grow from your experience with your ex. There's not a whole lot you can do to control his thoughts and behaviors and if it is meant to be that he will come back after checking out the grass on the other side, then he will come back. But it's a personal journey that he has to make to see if it does look greener or not. Common sense always says that the grass looks exactly the same, but people aren't always ruled by their heads or by common sense.

 

best of luck to you!

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Honestly, this is what it all comes down to. People may give vague reasons about breaking up that don't put any blame on you, but the fact is...there are specific things about you or the relationship that are real red flags to the dumper.

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Scout, I honestly don't think there were any red flags except the fear of committment maybe or the fact that he wants to explore further. Also, our relationship has been an LDR for the last few months, althoguh that was supposed to change with me moving back to the city where we met in the next few weeks.

 

I know he would not lie to me and I know that he hasn't found anyone else. What I do know is that he has confused the butterflies with love and since aftert 18 months with me he no longer feels those butterflies every time he sees me, he thinks that he shouldn't be with me anymore. That aside, we are the best of friends and he wants me to kind of hang in there while he lives out his life (no way, but there you go). I on the other hand am more experienced than him, having gone though break ups before and know whats for keeps and what isn't. I am not going to let him get me down because I know that he cares for me and loves me. He is just too immature at this stage. In fact, I would like him to date and see that what we have is not that easy to come by.

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Tamara,

 

Don't make excuses for him. You saying that he's "immature" and that you know he "cares for me" and "love me" are excuses for him.

 

You're better than this. You're better than to have to wait for a guy to come around. Whatever his reason for not wanting to be with you - it's not a loving one. He's not doing this for your sake, he's doing it for his.

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Chai is right on about this...as much as we hold on to lines like "they will never find anyone as great" as hope-filled tidbits, the truth is if they truly felt that way, and TRULY were happy, they would not leave in the first place. They never would take that risk.

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In fact, I would like him to date and see that what we have is not that easy to come by.

 

This is EXACTLY how I feel about my ex! I mean, I don't want him with someone else... It would kill me inside. But I know what we have is something that isn't just immediately replaceable, and I think in the 2.5 years we dated he FORGOT that. I don't know if he'll ever remember but there's the risk that by the time he does I'll have moved on in my own head and heart.

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Tamara,

 

Think of it this way....If he came back, after dating, seeing and being with other women, would it really be the same? Would you have faith that he wouldnt do it again (get restless and search for the Holy Grail of relationships again)? That is a very, very hard thing to get past. Believe me, i Know. Last summer my ex left me for 6 months to go find herself, see what else was out there, in her words, and when she came back, I was ecstatic. I had moved on, but i I welcomed her back, hoping we could rebuild. Yet, almost from the outset, i felt uneasy. Something was different. I had trouble commiting things, I had nightmares about the men she had been with, and I had trouble seeing long term things anymore. I tried to get over it, but I no longer could deal with being with someone who had left me, no, had left US, twice. In all my mistakes, and faults, I had never given up on us, and that ended up being a dealbreaker for me. Is it for you?

 

I ended it with her just over a month ago, so hard because I knew she loved me deeply and was in it this time, but my instincts told me to get out. Just something to consider, and I hope you are doing well

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Bounder, I just don't know anything at this stage. I don't know how I would feel. Judging by my experience in past break ups, I would probably just be getting back on my feet and he would try to waltz back into my life. Of course I would tell you now that I would take him back. But I am not sure how I would feel 6 months' down the line when my feelings will no doubt be rational and not emotion driven. Perhaps all this is good for me too - to get myself together and see whether he really was the one for me (as I thought/think) he is.

 

Should I do NC from now? There are still so many issues that remain unresolved between us but I guess he won't be contacting me as he thinks he got off lightly (I wasn't mean to him or anything when he broke up with me - played it cool)

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But thats the thing, think of the pain you are feeling right now because he bailed. It would take a darn good reason for him to leave to take him bacj, no? For the most part, people break up for selfish reasons - ego, self-preservation (fear of being hurt), curiosity, whatever. They may say otherwise, but its for them, not you. The feelings are easy to bring up if he came back, the butterflies, the excitement, but dig deep, remember these days and the pain, even if you dont want to....because that is what he will have to overcome if he is really meant for you after what he's done....

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Yes, you are right. I will make sure that I remember that if he does come back.

 

Bounder can you tell me a bit more about you and your ex - how did she leave (was it on good or bad terms) did you stay in touch after she left you, etc, etc?

 

Should I make one final attempt to see him face to face and talk about this? I am flying back to where we both used to live when we met, next week. All of our communication re break up has been via e-mail.

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You can check my thread history, I am off for work soon, but if you really want me to, I can write a manifesto for you tonight when I get back....might be helpful for me too. She left me twice last summer, he first time just for a few weeks before coming back (found out later she had a fling during that time) and then again two months after we got back together...i was back home in BC and she was pushing marriage talk and then all of a sudden I get a phone call saying it was over, she wanted to be single. Found out through friends she had met a new guy. The new guy dumped her like 2 months later, we stayed in contact at a miniml level (just the occasional IM) the entire time.......more to come if you like

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Yeah its a tough one. I really think the 23-27 year mark is very turbulent in most peoples lives. I remember a wise girl 26 at the time, telling me that 21-27 would be my toughest years. Dont know if thats the case but certainly was a time of change.

 

Problem with situations like this and to add to Chais point, if there wasnt something about you that made them leave then why would they leave? If you were the best thing since sliced bread would they risk losing you?

 

The problem really is called DENIAL we dont want to take a hit to our ego so we tell ourselves "they need to see whats out there, and what they are missing." This is why its so paramount to watch someones ACTIONS. Quite frankly what someone says is irrelevant and people who display actions that are incongruant with their words are too be avoided, dropped and forgotten.

 

So while your ex goes out and finds out no one out there is better than you and decides to come back. What has changed in yourself? There was a reason they risked losing such a great catch. Do you really want to be the consolation prize?

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I agree with Heartache about the honeymoon feelings disappearing then getting a bit of attention from someone and feeling those butterflies again. It is especially tough with the internet where its easy to develop ties with someone and all boundaries seem to get crossed instantly. My ex couldnt stop talking to guys on the internet and in the end it helped to destroy us. It gave her that extra attention she craved and he made the grass seemer greener on the other side. In my case I was fighting and invisible foe and had no clue about it. if you have someone elses shoulder to cry on you wont put as much effort into the relationship you have.

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I agree with Heartache about the honeymoon feelings disappearing then getting a bit of attention from someone and feeling those butterflies again. It is especially tough with the internet where its easy to develop ties with someone and all boundaries seem to get crossed instantly. My ex couldnt stop talking to guys on the internet and in the end it helped to destroy us. It gave her that extra attention she craved and he made the grass seemer greener on the other side. In my case I was fighting and invisible foe and had no clue about it. if you have someone elses shoulder to cry on you wont put as much effort into the relationship you have.

 

To be fair it is a particular issue within your exes that makes them "not be honest". Maybe you and I and everyone else(probably most people at some time) who has experienced similar situations were not what the exes were looking for. We didnt live up to their expectations. Instead of taking the high road and straight up saying "your not the one" they act it out but say the opposite. People will generally act in ways congruant to how they feel. However anyone can say anything at anytime. This is why looking at someones actions and not what they say is important.

 

ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS.

 

Its really that simple.

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